Hollie Davidson to make history this summer
Scottish Rugby referee Hollie Davidson will make history in June when she takes charge of the Portugal v Italy men’s international and becomes the first female to officiate a men’s Six Nations team in a test match.
Davidson has already refereed one men’s test, Malta’s 37-10 defeat of Cyprus in the Rugby Europe Conference 1 South in March 2019, but has been handed two matches this year with the Portugal v Italy game on 25 June before Canada v Belgium on 2 July.
Fresh from being named as an official at the Rugby World Cup 2021, playing in 2022, last week, Davidson will be part of an all-female team for the test in Portugal with Sara Cox (England) and Aurélie Groizeleau (France) her assistant referees and Claire Hodnett (England) the Television Match Official (TMO).
Already this season Davidson has refereed three matches in the United Rugby Championship – Glasgow v Edinburgh, Ulster v Cardiff, Ospreys v Munster – along with France v England in the 2022 Women’s Six Nations.
Following the announcement Hollie Davidson said: “To be the first woman to referee a men’s Six Nations team is a tremendous honour and an achievement I am proud of.
“I have been happy with my progress in the last couple of years and working as a full-time professional referee with Scottish Rugby has really helped that.
“I couldn’t believe it when I heard the news as I didn’t think something like this would have happened so quickly in my career but I’m really proud and looking forward to the summer.
“In the last year I have been fortunate to have been refereed high profile fixtures in both the men’s and women’s game which will act as great preparation going into the summer for these two matches.”
Scottish Rugby Performance Director Jim Mallinder said: “Hollie is a pioneer for female refereeing in Scotland and to make history by becoming the first woman to officiate a men’s match including a Tier 1 country is an incredible achievement.
“Hollie’s two appointments this summer are a testament to the effort she has put in so far in her refereeing career.
“She has refereed well this season building up experiences of taking charge of high profile matches such as the 1872 derby match recently. All of those matches will stand her in great stead as she marks another impressive milestone in her career.”